1346. Perfumes are the feelings of flowers. ~Heinrich Heine

Flowers always make people
better, happier, and more helpful;
they are sunshine, food
and medicine to the mind.
~Luther Burbank

Screen Shot 2017-01-25 at 8.04.58 PM.png

I mentioned in a post recently that every Sunday when we go to the grocery store to do our shopping, I buy flowers to put on my desk. And this week instead of cut flowers, I found a springtime mini bulb garden that had been planted in a pot. It was filled with tulips, crocus, dutch iris, hyacinth, and the tiniest little golden daffodils. The hyacinth in the photo above was just opening when I bought the potted garden, and for days now as it opened further I’ve enjoyed it’s heavenly perfume.And as the week has progressed, the crocus has opened as have the tulips and the iris. Then this morning, the last thing to push out of its papery sheaths were the daffodils, and that’s when squeals of delight could be heard far and wide. What absolute joy and great fun can come from the simplest of things! I’ve heard it said that simple minds have simple pleasures, and if that implies that I’m a simple-minded simpleton then so be it. For as the temperature outside plummets below the freezing mark again tonight, the fact that springtime is happening right here next to computer is just way, way too much fun, and simple as that may be, it brings me more than enough immeasurable joy to care not what others may think of me.

Screen Shot 2017-01-25 at 8.03.31 PM.png

Some women feel the need to act
like they’re never scared, needy or hurt;
like they’ve been hardened by the world.
I think that’s dishonest.
It’s ok to feel delicate sometimes.
Real beauty is in the fragility of one’s petals.
A rose that never wilts isn’t a rose at all.
~Edited quote by Crystal Woods

Perfume and incense bring joy to the heart, and the pleasantness of a friend springs from their heartfelt advice. ~Proverbs 27:9  ✝

**All photos were taken by me; I took them outside however instead of where they sit by my computer because I don’t like the way a flash alters the colors of flowers.

1124. I love tulips better than any other spring flower; they are the embodiment of alert cheerfulness and tidy grace… ~Excerpted line by Elizabeth von Arnim

 Guarded within the old red wall’s embrace,
Marshaled like soldiers in gay company,
The tulips stand arrayed.
~Excerpt from
a poem by Amy Lowell

Screen Shot 2016-04-15 at 8.15.49 PM.png

Sooooo, every week when we go to the grocery story, I buy one of those little bunches of cut flowers to set on the shelf near my computer. But this last week they had a pot of tulips on sale for $5.00 and they looked like they might be very pretty ones when they fully opened up. So I saved myself some money and brought the bargain, potted tulips home. And every day I have watched as they slowly but surely opened up into a very pretty species indeed. And here’s the thing, since I’ve tried and tried planting tulip bulbs in the ground with little to no luck at all, (actually this year I did get one to come up and bloom. It wasn’t very big but it was pretty) now I’m wondering, if I planted these that are already in soil in the pot instead of more bulbs in the fall, that they might actually come up next year and bloom for me. Okay, okay, before any of you gardening gurus out there have reasons to shoot holes in my theory, just let them lie and allow me to find out the folly of it for myself. That way I’ll have a whole year to look forward to their coming before my hopes are dashed again and I am once again “tulipless.” Also should any of you feel compelled to ask why I don’t just go out and cut flowers from my garden instead of buying ones each week, let me just say that I’m greedy and can’t stand for any of my babies to be “murdered.” And yes, I am also aware that the ones I buy have been “murdered,” but hey, that was someone else’s bad choice not mine.

Screen Shot 2016-04-15 at 9.28.46 PM.png

Flowers heal me. Tulips make me happy. I keep myself surrounded by them… ~Excerpt from a line by Rebecca Wells

…the cheerful heart has a continual feast. ~Excerpt from Proverbs 17:22   ✝

1084. A hush is over everything…the world is waiting for the spring. ~Sara Teasdale

Springtime is the land awakening.
The March winds are the morning yawn.
~Lewis Grizzard

Screen Shot 2016-03-02 at 9.19.13 PM.png

Don’t flowers put on their
Prettiness each spring and
Go to it with
Everything they’ve got?
Who Would criticize the bed of
Yellow tulips or the blue Hyacinths?

Screen Shot 2016-03-02 at 9.20.30 PM.png

So put a
Bracelet on your
Ankle with a
Bell on it and make a
Little music for
The earth beneath your foot, or

Screen Shot 2016-03-02 at 9.25.53 PM.png

Wear a hat with hot-colored
Ribbons for the
Pleasure of the
Leaves and the clouds, or at least
A ring with a gleaming
Stone for your finger…
~Excerpted lines from a poem
by Mary Oliver

He makes winds His messengers… ~Excerpt from Psalm 104:4  ✝

**Images via Pinterest; collages created by Natalie

652. Was it the smile of early spring that made my bosom glow…was it some feeling of delight, all vague and undefined? ~Anne Brontë

From December to March,
there are for many of us three gardens:
the garden outdoors, the garden of
pots and bowls in the house, and
the garden of the mind’s eye.
~Katherine S. White

Screen shot 2015-02-21 at 8.10.42 PM

In winter’s cold and sparkling snow,
The garden in my mind does grow.
I look outside to blinding white,
And see my tulips blooming bright.
And over there a sweet carnation,
Softly scents my imagination.

Screen shot 2015-02-21 at 8.08.47 PM

On this cold and freezing day,
The Russian sage does gently sway,
And miniature roses perfume the air,
I can see them blooming there.
Though days are short, my vision’s clear.
And through the snow, the buds appear.

DSC_0008

In my mind, clematis climbs,
And morning glories do entwine.
Woodland phlox and scarlet pinks,
Replace the frost, if I just blink.
My inner eye sees past the snow.
And in my mind, my garden grows.
~Cynthia Adams

You (God) have set the borders of the earth; You have made summer and winter. ~Psalm 74:17   ✝

459. The happiest man is he who learns from nature the lesson of worship. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

“Grace unfolds with every breath You’ve blown, Lord…”

DSC_0034

“The praise we sing is on the breath you breathed in us…”

DSC_0104

“So it is our hearts beat out the rhythm of a love song…”

DSC_0141

Why I Wake Early

Hello, sun in my face.
Hello, you who make the morning
and spread it over the fields
and into the faces of the tulips
and the nodding morning glories,
and into the windows of, even, the
miserable and crotchety–

best preacher that ever was,
dear star, that just happens
to be where you are in the universe
to keep us from ever-darkness,
to ease us with warm touching,
to hold us in the great hands of light–
good morning, good morning, good morning.

Watch, now, how I start the day
in happiness, in kindness.

~Mary Oliver

Let everything that has breath praise the Lord! Praise the Lord! Psalm 150:6   ✝

Thank you, Lord Jesus, that you save, you heal, you restore, and you reveal Your Father’s heart to us! May I dwell in Your holy presence and praise Your name for all that you have given and done.

286. Where flowers bloom so does hope. ~Lady Bird Johnson

Live each season as it passes
breathe the air, drink the drink,
taste the fruit, and resign yourself
to the influences of each.
~Henry David Thoreau

Image

Smitten (v.) – affected suddenly and strongly with a specified feeling; affected mentally or morally with a sudden pang; impressed favorably; charmed; enamored.  I love the word smitten, I love being smitten, I look forward to being smitten, and on days like today I’m in desperate need of being smitten.  And what might the source of my “smittenness” be today?  It’s tulips and daffodils and hyacinths and crocus.  After years of planting bulbs in the ground to little or no avail, I’d resigned myself to being able to admire them until now only in books, magazines, and yards where others somehow have success with them.

Image

Nothing speaks of springtime louder or more clearly than flowering bulbs.  They are the epitome of spring’s opening opus, and now that my greenhouse is abloom with many of them, it feels like spring is close enough to reach out and touch.  Ah, spring, the season of increased sunlight, warmer temperatures, and the rebirth of fauna and flora, the season when the tilt of the earth relative to the sun is zero, the season which begins one month from today.

Image

For me drinking the drink, tasting the fruit, and resigning myself to the influence of each season as it passes is a way of life that inevitably brings me face to face with Yahweh and Son, the Holy One with whom I am beyond smitten.  Like Tennyson, I’m convinced that if one can understand what a flower is “root and all, and all in all, one should know what God and man is.”

O taste and see that the Lord is good; happy are those who take refuge in Him.  ~Psalm 34:8   ✝

280. Spring, you put a spell on me and you make me feel like dancing… ~Edited and adapted excerpt of lyrics by Vincent, Poncia Jr./Leo Sayer

Happy days are here again!
The skies above are clear again!
So let’s sing a song of cheer again!
Happy days are here again!
~Excerpted lyrics by Milton Ager/Jack Yellen

Image

Image

Okay, so it’s not really spring yet, at least not according the the calendar, but springy things sprang up in my greenhouse yesterday.  As a result melodies, not just from the birds, filled the air, and indeed it was an occasion for dancing.  I didn’t care what the neighbors might think about an old lady jumpin’ around like a madwoman, it was definitely time for some singin’ and a little jig.  Why?  Well after weeks of waiting tulips were blooming, a daffodil had opened up, and the first bee of the season had found its way inside to sup on the nectar in my little grape hyacinths.  I don’t know about you, but that’s a formula for springtime in my book.  And every time beauty and miracles like that emerge from seemingly nothingness, I fall in love all over again with the Creator of the Universe.  What amazing things He has made and given to us, we creatures who are often so undeserving of His gifts and His grace!  Now that’s love, is it not?!

He said, “O Lord, God of Israel, there is no God like you, in heaven or on earth, keeping covenant in steadfast love with your servants who walk before you with all their heart.  ~2 Chronicles 6:14  ✝